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Eating Your Own Dogfood

In the technology industry, a company that uses its own product is said to eat its own dogfood. At, Carolyn Elefant, citing a recent New York ruling invalidating a lawyer's retainer agreement, suggests it is a practice lawyers should follow as well.

The ruling, reported by Anthony Lin in the New York Law Journal, said that a retainer agreement violated public policy when it treated the lawyer more favorably than the client. The agreement would have awarded the lawyer his attorney fees in an action to collect his own fees under the agreement, but it provided no reciprocal right should the client prevail. Observes Elefant:

Virtually no attorney would advise a client to enter into a contract where one side could recover fees for collection actions but the other could not.  Yet when it comes to their own agreements with clients, these same attorneys reject the same advice that they'd give to their clients in any other circumstance, and draft provisions that favor one side - the attorney.

Concluding that this attorney should have eaten his own dogfood, Elefant asks, "Are you eating yours?"

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on October 17, 2006 at 06:03 PM | Permalink | Comments (4)


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